Tchaikovsky Sounds Funny: A Trip to the Garden of Good and Evil

Is this where I put in key words such as sex, lesbians, vampires, Christopher Lloyd and others things to which this blog do not pertain, but by putting them here, I may get hits from all the Christoper Lloyd lesbian vampire fans (and you know who you are)? This is the primarily humorous and occasionally rambling writings of Leon Tchaikovsky, humor writer. Enjoy.

Friday, December 17, 2004

A Trip to the Garden of Good and Evil

Tchaikovsky Sounds Funny

I have returned from Savannah. I was greeted with those words that every visitor wishes to hear: my cab driver asked “you’re not going to rob me, are you?” Apparently I fit the description of someone who has been robbing cab drivers lately (I believe the description has narrowed the culprit down to “white male”), which is reassuring to know that at anytime during my stay I may be grabbed and detained by a Georgia Sheriff for fitting that description. I become more concerned when my cab driver, after determining I was with the government, started berating me about “what are you going to do about the monkey people?” It sounded like something out of the X-Files: he insisted the Federal government had created a crossbreed of humans and monkeys and that they were running loose in Savannah doing, who knows what, but it can’t be good. (Actually, I am certain that monkey people can become productive members of society, and even if they do have diminished brain capacities, they can still become active Republicans.) I was getting concerned when he missed the exit and insisted he knew “some back roads” way to get downtown. Fortunately, I arrived safely.

The food of Savannah is unique. They offer such things as fudge pie, black eyed pea sandwiches, cheesecake inside a fried tortilla, and cinnamon role French toast. I am now convinced the average life expectancy in Savannah is around age 35.

At one point during the stay, I was even more concerned when I was asked “are you a convicted felon or criminally insane? I suddenly had a Christopher Lloyd moment (note Christopher Lloyd fans accidentally drawn to this site: there actually is a Christopher Lloyd reference after all!) and was tempted to respond “am I limited to picking just one of the two?”

Savannah is America’s first planned city, but not the best planned. People who have been there will quickly understand this: it is not a good idea to place a row of bars along a street with cobblestones, many poorly lighted steps, and open stairways rising three stories. I am certain many a drunk spent a last evening of drinking in Savannah.

Savannah drunks are interesting. I couldn’t help overhearing one drunk telling the people at his table about the time he ate some mushrooms and he couldn’t sleep for a month afterwards. Frankly, I am not certain if it was the mushrooms: it might have been too much of that fudge pie.

Restaurants try to be quaint. I saw a confused gentlemen looking at his two bathroom door options before turning to me and asking, “excuse me, my English is not very good. Am I a “Sheila” or a “Bloke”? “Frankly, I think that’s a personal decision for you to make”, is how I should have answered.

One bar was having a Pimp and Ho Party and invited customers to attend dressed as one or the other. I was attempted to arrive in overalls with a gardening hoe and announce “I ain’t right certain what a pimp is, but I always dress like a hoer.”

One art museum had a nude male statute. Apparently, to protect the young of Savannah, someone had hacked the penis off of the statue. Frankly, if I were a young boy of Savannah, I might be more traumatized by a hacked off penis.

Which brings us to Casimir Pulaski, the Revolutionary War General who was killed in action in Savannah. I like how different museums explain his death. One casually mentions that he died of a bullet wound. Another museum provides the more gory details that he was shot somewhere in the groin (we can only guess where) and died in great pain (which I am afraid it must have been). They seem to love to hack those things off in Savannah. They have the bullet on display in the Historic Society. Someone loves to traumatize the youth of Savannah.

Some in Savannah seem to have not forgotten the Civil War. The local history museum, without even mentioning the name Eli Whitney, tells how the cotton gin, “although invented by a Yankee”, was invented near Savannah. One night, a piano player was taking requests. Someone requested he play “New York, New York.” The piano played just glared back and responded “Sir, I have only a two word response for you.”

Savannah, incidentally, was founded by James Oglethorpe, who founded a colony for religious freedom where any Protestant or Jew could practice their religion without fear. Catholics, though, were not allowed.

A tour guide pointed out their Cultural Center. It looked like a very impressive building. Then she announced the upcoming monster truck rally and mud wrestling events. Unfortunately, I am not joking.

Should I be concerned that there is a Longevity Institute in Savannah, and in their window they had an advertisement for an estate sale?

While there, I met Murray Silver, who has authored several books, including “Behind the Moss Curtain”, which contains descriptions of some of the more colorful people of Savannah in recent years. I read it on the flight home. It is an excellent book. As my plane was landing bringing me home, I reached the part in his book where he told about the Federal government’s attempts during the 1940s to conduct genetic engineering tests between monkeys and humans and how, when they lost their funding, they let the subjects loose in the wild and…

No, please, no, please don’t tell us that monkey people…


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